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Transliteration

A Collection of Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror Stories Featuring Transmasculine Characters

by Reis Asher

Transliteration - Reis Asher
Editions:Kindle: $ 2.99
Pages: 258
Paperback: $ 12.99
Size: 8.00 x 5.00 in
Pages: 258

Do you crave science fiction, fantasy, and horror stories with a dash of the erotic and romantic, featuring transmasculine leads? Welcome to TRANSLITERATION.

The top surgeon whose price is free—with an asterisk. Loving a machine that cannot love you back. A world where suicide has become the accepted norm. Medical science in an age where curatives are only for the rich. The ultimate gift that cannot save a failing marriage. Trying to keep a normal routine during societal collapse. A strange water creature that preys upon pity to transform its victim into its ideal mate. A dystopian state in which sexual reproduction is a crime. An unusual marriage proposal presented to a young lord. A nonbinary Regent who realizes the dragon is the least of their nation's problems.

In this collection of fifteen speculative short stories, Reis Asher seeks to explore past, present, future, and alternate worlds through the lens of transmasculinity. Sometimes bright and optimistic, other times rooted in a deep cynicism about society, TRANSLITERATION examines our hopes, our fears, and our flaws.

Published:
Publisher: Independently Published
Cover Artists:
Genres:
Tags:
Pairings: M-F, M-M, M-NB, Includes NB



Ending: Click here to reveal

Character Identities: Bisexual, Gay, Non Binary, Questioning, Pansexual, Straight, Transgender

Tropes: Age Difference, Enemies to Lovers, Forbidden Love, Most Mindblowing Sex Ever, Star-Crossed Lovers, True Love


Languages Available: English

Excerpt:

My Girlfriend Is Annoyed

Picture this. A busy restaurant. Classy, but in that still-affordable range, meaning the place has good vibes but the food is shipped in frozen. The sound of cutlery hitting plates and the hum of chatter provides the soundtrack, which is far better than the faux-classical elevator music pouring out of cheap speakers set into the ceiling.

Cecilia, as always, looks stunning, in that too-good-to-be-true sense. Clothes seem like they were made for her, accentuating her curves and never coming up too long or too short. Either she has a tailor on retainer or she's managed to stop growing at the perfect height. The dress she's wearing tonight hugs her frame, and the satin is so smooth I can't stop touching her. 

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Regardless, the bigger miracle here is that she wants anything to do with me. Short, autistic, chubby, acne-riddled from second puberty—I have nightmares that she'll show up to a date one day with a handsome cis guy on her arm, and between them and the restaurant staff, they'll laugh me out of the establishment for believing a girl like her could be interested in a guy like me. 

Don't self-sabotage, my therapist told me. Easier said than done, but I try to keep it in the forefront of my mind. Perhaps something is charming about me, like my love of puns, my wardrobe that belongs in a tent catalog, or my mascot-like ability to draw attention to myself in the most absurd ways possible.

Or maybe she's so beautiful of spirit that she can see past the outside into the heart of me and sees something there that I don't. I do wish she'd tell me, but she always manages a coy little smirk when I ask. As if I should know already.

I'm afraid to press.

Today, though, I sense a reticence about her. Her nerves flow into me and suddenly I realize this is it. The big breakup. It's not me, it's her, she dated me because she felt sorry for me and now she's realizing that she'd rather die than suffer through one more awkward date at the movies where afterward, instead of making out with her, I posit that the male lead and his sidekick are almost certainly fucking and I'll write fanfiction about it later but I want to know what she thinks about my theory—

"Aiden." The sound of my name on her lips grounds me. It always has. I thought it always would. "I'm not breaking up with you."

"I didn't think you—Good." The clammy sweat on my forehead was a dead giveaway. Or she's a mind reader. She's uncanny when it comes to knowing what I'm thinking, but I like it. I'm not good at telling her how I feel. It's easier if she uses her intuition to draw it out of me before I can have a meltdown and leave.

"You might break up with me, though." She looks down at her menu, and for the first time in six months, she looks desperately sad. Something twists in my chest and I ache to console her, but how can I do that without knowing what the problem is? I'm at a loss here.

A waiter chooses that particular moment to drift over and ask if we're ready yet, and I bite back the urge to tell him I've never been less hungry in all my life. It's not his fault he has the world's worst timing.

"Need a minute," I mumble. "Please."

"Understood... Sir." The delay while he mentally stumbles over my gender isn't fun, but I've got bigger problems on my plate right now. The woman I love is soul-crushingly sad, and she doesn't seem to understand that I wouldn't break up with her if she confessed to sleeping with the entirety of my favorite hockey team. I can hear my therapist's voice in my head telling me it's unhealthy to be a doormat, you have to set boundaries or you will get used and abused by others.

I know. I know!

"Please, Cece, whatever it is, you know I'll understand." I reach my clammy hands across the table and grasp hers. It's supposed to be comforting but I'm fully aware it's gross and she'll have to wash her hands again before eating. I never used to sweat this much, but now I'm a twenty-two-year-old doing puberty for the second time and it still sucks.

Her voice is barely a whisper. "You might. You might be the only one."

Is she going to come out as nonbinary? Or a man? Does she think I'd mind? Does she believe my late-night ramblings about wanting to have wild and passionate sex with Tony Stark are purely theoretical? (I mean, they are, but only because Tony Stark doesn't exist and wouldn't look at me if I did, not because I wouldn't date a man). Maybe she thinks I wouldn't love her with a face covered in acne like she wouldn't be the most beautiful person in the world to me even if she wasn't a woman. Does she want different pronouns? Should I be using they in my thoughts?

Cecelia leans forward to whisper in my ear. I'm vaguely aware of the waiter hovering by my right ear like a bee. He wants to wait on this table, and we're holding him up. Fewer customers, fewer tips. I guess it's rude in a way, but my whole world is transforming before my eyes here and I need a minute more—

"I'm an android."

COLLAPSE

About the Author

Reis Asher lives in a fast-growing cat colony in rural Pennsylvania with his husband. He is the author of the nonbinary thriller Killing Games, published by NineStar Press, and the Nick Fabian series of transgender detective novels. He is transgender and bisexual, and wants to bring queer and diverse stories out into the light.

Catch him on Twitter @landale where he's happy to interact.